Sometimes saving money is as simple as just not spending it, rather than spending less or finding a cheaper way. There’s a number of things I notice others do, and think ‘wow, imagine how much money I’d spend if I did that/bought those?’ These things are
- magazines: I never ever buy them. That’s not to say I wouldn’t LOVE to know what Kim Kardashian has done now, or the latest decorating trends. I just can’t justify the $5-$10 for the drivel and paid advertising. And then the ‘waste’ (even if it is all recycling). Best I send the publishers a message by not buying them. There’s always the library.
- books: Whilst I have no philosophical opposition to the purchase of books, I can’t handle the clutter they create. I’d rather borrow books from family, friends or a library, and keep my collection concise.
- hair colour: I’m ‘only’ 28, but I’ve never felt the need to colour my hair. Not that I have the best natural shade, but it’s what God gave me, and it’s not too shabby! However, until recently I also didn’t spend much money on… (Thanks to Simply Living Free for the link to My Journey to Ithaca who has so many well articulated reasons that I couldn’t agree with more)
- hair cuts: up until a month ago, I would not cut my hair until I could no longer brush it – when the split ends had taken over! However, since I shaved my head (which was done for free by a friend – and raised close to $5k), I have decided to enlist a professional to help me grow it out with style. I’m not sure the Bart Simpson look is what I want!
- cleaning products: I planned to move into my own home and only use green products – which means I’ve never owned oven cleaner, window spray, toliet cleaner, floor cleaner, surface spray etc etc. I do however have dishwashing liquid, vinegar, bicarb soda, soap and washing soda. Oh and a plethora of microfibre cloths.
- phone plan: I’ve always bought my phones outright, and then selected my credit in the form of a prepaid or postpaid plan. This gives me flexibility, and prepaid really helps manage costs – particularly when you add global roaming! I’m yet to get a ‘scary’ bill, and I wear that with a badge of honour!
- internet: I don’t have ‘internet’ at home. I use my phone for all my browsing. Given I have internet at work, my parents and my boyfriends, I like the mental quietness of only having the internet on my small phone. And given it’s a smart phone, there’s pretty much nothing it can’t do!
- smoking: I have never smoked (except in a VERY realistic dream!). I haven’t even experimented with any drugs, so this is one clear way I’ve avoided a black hole of costs!
- gambling: I never buy a scratchie, lottery ticket or anything similar. I even (try to) avoid being in the sweeps for ‘the race that stops a nation’ – the Melbourne Cup.
What things do you do without to save money?
8 Replies to “Ways I ‘save’ money”
I’m a firm believer that the reason for being frugal is not just to spend within my means, but to be able to buy what I value. Like you, I realize a lot of things are NOT important to me, like getting manicures and pedicures, alcohol and cigarettes, lottery tickets, jewellery or winter vacations. I spend money on the vices I prefer, like rock concerts and premium coffee!
Hahaha there’s an accompanying post on what I ‘spend’ on – at least luxuries and vices. Maybe tomorrow? Winter holidays – winter here is summer there (northern hemisphere) so it’s when I try to plan my big holiday. Jewellery – well I don’t spend much, but lately I did splurge and spend $28 getting two cuffs, three bangles, three rings, one set of earrings… so I can’t say I don’t buy jewellery, but there’s a long time between purchases, and I buy cheap stuff…
I also don’t buy magazines and have never coloured my hair or smoked 🙂 I also don’t gamble and make my own cleaning products. Recently I have really cut down on my spending on toiletries by making my own and just stopping using quite a lot of products. And I don’t ever buy coffee because I don’t like it much (although I do buy green tea occasionally – a rip-off at $4.95).
I do have a phone plan for the first time ever (my iPhone), but I’m not sure if I would get one again, or just save up and buy the phone upfront. I love it and it’s definitely one of my luxuries, but I’m hoping it will last a long time after the plan ends. My other splurges are good quality chocolate and yoga classes 🙂
Oh I’m a sucker for buying coffee – but mainly on weekends. Actually mainly with company, and a lot less alone (when I first moved to my central little apartment, I loved being so close to cafes, but the novelty has worn off – not so for the BF!) That green tea is mighty pricey!
Yoga classes are something I’m looking to add to my list of expenses (and fitness!)
Similar on everything except the home internet. I was looking at our usage stats and decided we could trim back much more on our package. Great list!
It’s nice to know my readers/commenters are in a similar mindset! (some people are convinced I’m a martian, with my points of views on things, so it’s nice to know I’m part of a community of sorts!)
I think home internet could happen in the future, it just hasn’t yet.